• Researcher finds a way to mimic curves in space-time

    Here on Earth, it's rather difficult to replicate curved space-time – to get that kind of effect in nature, you'd have to get uncomfortably close to black holes and other distant space objects. However, researcher Nikodem Szpak may have found a way to simulate that bend without facing oblivion. His proposed technique puts supercooled atoms in an optical lattice created by a laser field; so long as the laws of quantum mechanics and thermodynamics hold true, the atoms should behave like they're experiencing curved space-time. You can even change the lattice's pattern to mimic different circumstances, whether it's a moment right after the Big Bang or the surface of a star.

  • Here's every device getting Android 5.0 Lollipop so far

    If you're a die-hard Android fan, you're probably champing at the bit waiting for that Lollipop upgrade – when will you get it? Are you going to get it? Thankfully for you, a number of companies have already promised to upgrade some of their devices to this candy-flavored OS. Google's Nexus 4, 5, 7 and 10 models are naturally first in line, as are Android One and Google Play Edition hardware; its outgoing Motorola brand is equally on top of things with plans to patch the Moto E, G and X alongside Verizon's Droid Mini, Maxx and Ultra. HTC and OnePlus don't have full details, but they're both pledging to give their recent flagships a taste of Lollipop within 90 days of receiving finished code. NVIDIA and Sony, meanwhile, are being vague. While they're respectively teasing plans to update the Shield Tablet and the Xperia Z series, they won't say when just yet.

  • Scientists want to fight the Ebola outbreak using robots

    Outbreaks of lethal viruses like Ebola are bad enough by themselves, but they're made worse by having to send in aid workers – these people can quickly become victims, no matter how careful they are. To eliminate that risk, both the White House and a trio of educational institutions are holding workshops on November 7th where scientists will discuss using robots to tackle the current Ebola crisis. The goal is to minimize physical contact whenever possible while keeping patients and families in touch. At a basic level, they'd like machines to disinfect areas and deliver supplies. Telepresence robots, meanwhile, could both let people visit patients without putting themselves in danger.

  • Disney rendered its new animated film on a 55,000-core supercomputer

    Disney's upcoming animated film Big Hero 6, about a boy and his soft robot (and a gang of super-powered friends), is perhaps the largest big-budget mash-up you'll ever see. Every aspect of the film's production represents a virtual collision of worlds. The story, something co-director Don Hall calls "one of the more obscure titles in the Marvel universe," has been completely re-imagined for parent company Disney. Then, there's the city of San Fransokyo it's set in – an obvious marriage of two of the most tech-centric cities in the world. And, of course, there's the real-world technology that not only takes center stage as the basis for characters in the film, but also powered the onscreen visuals. It's undoubtedly a herculean effort from Walt Disney Animation Studios, and one that's likely to go unnoticed by audiences.

  • Flickr chooses a great time to launch its iPad app

    Apple has chosen to focus on the iPad's camera abilities with the upcoming Air 2 (we wish they wouldn't) and apparently, finally snagged Flickr's attention. Yahoo's photo sharing service somehow managed to beat Instagram to the punch so perhaps the introduction of its first iPad-ready app (four years after Apple's slate arrived) isn't that late. So what's in the (now universal) Flickr iOS app? iPad-optimized layouts for members to browse pictures whether their own or others that "cascade in a lovely waterfall format." If you must take a picture with your tablet, the app can record photos or videos with live filters and a full suite of editing tools. It requires iOS 8 to work, and some of the upgrades that stretch across devices include support for the new sharing extensions, photo detail editing and a new unified search. The update is live in the app store now, and of course there's no time like 3AM ET on a Saturday to give it a try.

  • 'Halo: The Master Chief Collection' needs 20GB day-one patch

    When the long-awaited Halo: The Master Chief Collection gets released next month, the first thing players will have to do is download what's estimated to be a 20GB update, according to developer 343 Industries. The day-one patch, which is required to unlock multiplayer features, isn't particularly shocking when you consider that this a 4-in-1 title – still, that's asking for a lot of hard drive space from users. "Our philosophy has been to give Halo fans the best possible experience and not compromise the quality or features of the collection," Dan Ayoub, Halo External Development's studio head, wrote in a blog post. "The result is that Halo: The Master Chief Collection will take up almost all of the usable space of a single Blu-ray (45 GB)." In addition, Ayoub let it be known that Spartan Ops, a co-op mode for Halo 4, won't be coming to The Master Chief Collection until December, which will likely disappoint a few fans of the franchise. But, most importantly, how do you feel? Let us know in the comments section.

  • Twitter: Yes, you're all going to see tweets from people you don't follow

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  • Unable to find a suitor, Twitpic is shutting down on October 25th

    It looked like Twitpic would live on after a trademark spat with Twitter. Last month, the photo-sharing service announced that it was shutting down, and then that it had been acquired. It seems that whatever deal was on the table went south as the service is really truly shutting down on October 25th. Founder Noah Everett took to the company's blog to announce its ultimate fate, stating that "agreeable terms could not be met" after sifting through "a handful of potential acquirers." Everett also said that while the announcement that Twitpic would stay active was premature, the company felt that is was important to let its users know it would keep on trucking as soon as it could. If you need to grab your images, you can get info on exporting data and snapshots here.

  • CBS launches its own TV subscription platform for $6 a month

    Less than a day after HBO finally promised to let users cut out the middle man, CBS has decided to do the same. The company is launching CBS All Access, which charges $6 a month to stream new episodes of its shows the day after broadcast. You'll be able to stream 15 of its prime-time shows in this way, including big hits like NCIS and The Big Bang Theory as well as 6,500 episodes of classic TV from the CBS back catalog as a sweetener. That'll enable you to binge down on classic shows like, uhm, MacGyver and I Love Lucy whenever and wherever you want. The platform will also enable you to watch the live streams from the Big Brother house when that show returns next year, which seems like an adequate apology after CBS helped kill off Aereo.

  • Google Translate Chrome extension can zoom in on short bits of text

    Say, you're reading an article written in your third language but can't properly decipher a sentence or two – you can just highlight those specific lines and let the Google Translate extension for Chrome do the rest. The add-on's new update makes it simpler to translate small snippets out of websites: highlighting part of the text leads to a pop-up icon you can click to view the translation (or some semblance of it, since we all know the service isn't always on point) on the same screen. You can also right click and choose Google Translate to view the original sentence and its meaning in a separate tab, though. Of course, if you want to to read the whole page in the language of your choice, you can always click the service's icon living in the corner of your browser. The extension should update itself if it's already installed, otherwise, you can download it right now from the Chrome Web Store.